The Empress ~ Anne Weston: If you receive this card in a reading, the feminine principle, in all its variegated forms, is being activated in your life. You could be physically pregnant, or about to give birth to a creation: a plan, a book, a craft project.
~Tarot of Jane Austen by Diane Wilkes
Saturday dawned beautiful again (is there any other weather in California?), but a strange thing seemed to happen to some of the ladies overnight. Several were seen sporting strange markings on their arms, hands and legs. One said "I (Heart) Mr. Darcy" and another "Janeite." Still another proclaimed "Feminine Lawlessness." How very peculiar. No, really it was only some terrific temporary tattoos provided by Mary Ellen. It was a great idea, and we had lots of fun with them.
The Magician ~ Henry Crawford: Like Henry, you possess many gifts -- great charm, fluidity of communication and the ability to manifest your goals seemingly without effort.
~Tarot of Jane Austen by Diane Wilkes
Laurel announced a contest for the weekend. A large variety of vegetables were provided, along with pipe cleaners, pins, Mr. Potato Head parts, and various other crafty items. We were challenged to create our own "Exemplary Vegetable." On Saturday evening the vegetables would undergo a rigorous judging, and a prize would be awarded: a signed copy of Chef John's cookbook. It was remarkable the amount of fun and laughter went into the creation of the little vegetable people.
The Lovers ~ Mr. Darcy & Elizabth Bennet: When this card appears in a reading, a love relationship is spotlighted.
~Tarot of Jane Austen by Diane Wilkes
As the morning was free, many trooped into Sonoma for some shopping or off to a winery for a tour and tasting. One group headed off to the Matanzas Winery, where there is a lavender farm in addition to the winery. Noon time saw us all back at the ranch for lunch, with a bit of flexing and warming up for our afternoon adventure: Regency dancing.
The Emperor ~ Sir Thomas Bertram: Everything about this card indicates power and material success..
~Tarot of Jane Austen by Diane Wilkes
Our instructor for the afternoon was Alan Winston, and he was extremely knowledgeable - and patient. He brought with him two musicians and a female partner, and did a fabulous job at making a room full of hot and giggling women look like experts at Regency dances. It was fascinating to learn the steps and the movements, to find out first hand what it means to be moving up and down the dance ("are we ones or twos now?") and to see how much time there would have been for a couple to flirt together. We were all exhausted from our efforts by the end of the session, but it was all great fun. Dancing Master
Clifford Once we all had a chance to rest up a bit and recover our senses, we gathered on the terrace for a group photo. As our next event was to be a Regency Dinner with a California Flair, prepared by Chef John. In absentia, JulieW had decided we should all be properly attired, so Cheryl and Myretta brought tiaras and fans for all of us. Adorned in our finery, we had our photo taken. So did the Ranch cat, Clifford. He looked quite becoming in all his glory.
The Chariot ~ Mary Crawford: The Chariot speaks to upward mobility and movement, movement that will heedlessly trample old ways in its focused drive to success.
~Tarot of Jane Austen by Diane Wilkes
The Hierophant ~ Mr. Collins:This card has a history of representing great power and, perhaps the desire for more of it. You might be obsessed with hierarchy and, like Mr. Collins, may be overly impressed by clout....
~Tarot of Jane Austen by Diane Wilkes
The Regency dinner was incredible. Chef John had been working on the dinner, studying menus and adding his own style to the dishes, for several months, and we all truly appreciated it. There was much groaning afterward, from being full, from enjoying every bite, and from disappointment that the meal was over.
Chef John
Chef John's Regency Menu
Next came the results of the Exemplary Vegetable competition. Cheryl and Lynn, being the most impartial of the group (as non-vegetable eaters), judged the vegetables on basic criteria - creativity, use of vegetable, humor, and so on. The large variety of characters created made the job very difficult; Darth Eggplant and Lady Catherine de Spud, for example. In the end, however, Sharon was deemed the winner. Her Soldier Tomato was a fascinating combination of use of paper napkin, use of the stem end for the face and sheer ingenuity. What an exemplary vegetable! Sharon graciously posed with both her winning tomato and her prize.
Once everyone had heaved themselves around the pool back to the meeting room, we had our annual Rocky Horror viewing of an adaptation. This year it was Pride and Prejudice 3, with Keira Knightly and Matthew McFayden. Squirt guns for the rain, ribbons to wave, and hankies to hide from the errors and inconsistencies were the order of the day. The audience shared in the sighing and giggling, and also in hissing at the baddies in the movie. One added feature was the dramatic reenacting of a scene which had been cut from the movie. Laurel, having obtained the script for this scene that was so haphazardly cut from the final production, acted the part of Mr. Gardiner, Kathleen (Elder) the part of Mrs. Gardiner, and Lynn the part of Lizzy. The audience was then able to accurately understand exactly how it was that Lizzy came to be walking back to the inn, rather than riding back in the carriage with her aunt and uncle. Thank heavens the truth has come out at last.


- Republic of Pemberley -

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